Did anybody else just lose TNN?

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fnordboy
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Post by fnordboy » Jan 15th 2003, 3:42 pm

See that is what make sme laugh, a smaller cable co for one of the largest metropolitan areas.

My complaint wasnt with the number of channels it was the sh!t reception on the existing ones. There is no reason why NBC or CBS should be unwatchable.

And now the problem that I see everyone who still has cable has (atleast around here) is that they are trying ot force people into Digital Cable, which costs an extremely high amount more than standard cable. I've seen Pay-per-view channels drop from 5 available to 1 available. Channels disappear off of the reg. service and only become available on Dig. Cable. It is disgusting how cable companies completely monopolize areas and then force you into either A- paying extreme amounts for subpar selection or B - forcing you to get product X as it is the only one that will make normal channels available.

And they wonder why people jump ship and go to satellite. Or steal cable.
mglenn wrote:Ya careful there fnordboy, I work for a cable company! Although I can understand your plight as you were a sub for a smaller cable provider. Theres a cost to update the network to handle more channels and services. But once that cost is payed I assure you that cable can provide far more services than the dish can... But then service is an issue and many of the larger cable companies only care about the bottom line and so service is sacraficed... where as service is a priority here at the company I work for and instead my salary is sacraficed! :evil:

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Post by mglenn » Jan 15th 2003, 3:47 pm

Get a Tivo or ReplayTV (Better yet get two like me :twisted: ) then you'll never have to watch a commercial again!

As for the unwatchable stations, thats either a reception or distribution problem... which the engineers should beable to solve. Was the reception the same at other peoples house. If theirs was better then the drop to your house was bad. Shoulda called and demanded a truck roll. Ofcource then the issue is whether its the wiring in your house or up to your house thats bad. The first is your problem, the second is the cable companies... Although this company would fix both.

But to answer your question about more services, Yes once upto date a cable company can provide services like Video on Demand (VOD), Personal Video Recording (PVR) as well as Internet and Telephone that the Sat boys can't touch yet. Now I know you'll tell me that VOD and PVR are possible on Sat but not at the level I'm talking about... I get to see toys that would make you trade your children to the cable company if you could get them today.

But then again Armstrong, thats the company I work for, has what is considered the most advanced cable system in the country if not the world! :D
Last edited by mglenn on Jan 15th 2003, 3:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"When I disagree with a rational man, I let reality be our final arbiter; if I am right, he will learn; if I am wrong, I will; one of us will win, but both will profit." - Ayn Rand

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Post by fnordboy » Jan 15th 2003, 3:47 pm

K-man wrote:I bought a satellite for my folks back in '94 when they were first available here and back then you had to buy the hardware. I spent $963.00 for the dish/rec./install etc. Then I started paying for programming. Brutal! DSS has it's advantages over cable, except for the ultra-annoying feature that every time a show goes to commercial, it is either for DirecTV pay-per-view or Bowflex. :x And every time it is humid or raining/storming you lose the picture. I love commercials!!!!!! I know....I'm sick, sick, sick!!!!!!!! :twisted:
I have no problem with their commercial selection. Granted their are quite a number of DirecTV commercials, but you have that on any channel. Try watching Lifetime. All it is is Lifetime commercials and As Seen on TV commercials.

I have only had service problems in very heavy rain storms. Snow causes no problem whatsoever. Even when the service drops, it is back on in minutes usually. Which is better than my DSL service at times. But I would take occassional drop in service for rainstorms over drops for everything when i had cable: "Sorry service dropped it is raining/too hot/snowing/because we are retarded/humid"

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Post by mglenn » Jan 15th 2003, 4:19 pm

It might not have been caused by rain... Twice a year you'll get whats called Sunout. Which is when the sun is directly inline with the bird your dish is pointed at. The RF radiation from the sun overpowers the birds feed.

Yet another issue that affects all sats.
"When I disagree with a rational man, I let reality be our final arbiter; if I am right, he will learn; if I am wrong, I will; one of us will win, but both will profit." - Ayn Rand

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Post by K-man » Jan 15th 2003, 4:36 pm

Fnordboy, while I haven't have a lot of problems with the precipitation, it seems the annoying thing is the timing when the humidity decides to play havoc on the signal. Nothing like watching overtime in a playoff game and suddenly the screen freezes. (And, yes that did happen to me. :cry:) Or when you order Blockbuster Ticket PPV and the same thing happens. But at least now you can re-start the movie on another channel if it happens to konk-out during a storm. And I did have to pull a chainsaw-massacre on the shade tree next to the house a few years ago. Seems the branches were interfereing with the signal. But, there are a LOT of channel choices on sat. you don't get w/ cable. But, you also have to pay for 'em. Unless of course you have a crafty friend who owes you favors and happens to be a distributor of descrambler cards and...um... well ya know, I don't have a friend like that, but I'm just saying and well...I better quit while I'm ahead. :wink:
Daddy sold the farm and they've killed my trees. K-man

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Post by fnordboy » Jan 15th 2003, 5:21 pm

MGlenn:

Cable of course will offer more options if/when fully loaded. But to me it is not cost effective since those toys are most likely going to be more expensive. As it is now, majority of those things available now are only offered through Dig. Cable, which in comparison with sat., is more expensive.

Satellite does offer high speed internet and has atleast in my area for a while, though I go with DSL myself.

As far as reception. I was in others houses/apts that had similar problems, if not worse in my 'hood. So it wasn't just me.

I occasionally get door-to-door Optimum Online (roadrunner service) reps from the cable co at my house. And when i tell them i have no interest in their service they usually ask why so i go off on my rant. It always ends in them either asking about my dish and if it is worth it, or that they have too been looking into the service since cable is lacking.

The other main reason why Satellite rules for me is you mirror channel choices on anyother tv in your house for 5 dollars more. Cable was always a choice of what tv do you think will need what channels in your house because to mirror what is on the main tv would double cost. Maybe now that is better, or available through digital subscription...but it wasnt when i made the jump to sat.

Now if cable was more an open market and not a monopoly maybe I would not feel the way i do about Cable Co's. But If the consumer is not offered a choice in service, which we weren't (and neither was anywhere else i know of) until DirecTV and DishNetwork, you are at the whims of the company who will charge outrageous costs and deliever crap service.

You are like the only person I have ever talked to who is happy with their cable service. Most likely because it is your livelihood (and its free).

K-Man:

I get a super strong signal, and really have no probs with anything except in huge downpours. I live blocks from the Hudson River so it is humid around here, never was that a cause of any problems. You might want to try repositioning the sat to get a higher signal. And for the record I have never had to move my dish since I installed it, unlike the claims of cable co's in their anti-dish commercials.

I never use the descrambler cards. They get flashed too easy and too often. My cable boxes were were never zapped the many many years I had them. Though with sat. I actually dont have a need/desire to get the hook up, I am more than content. :)
K-man wrote:Fnordboy, while I haven't have a lot of problems with the precipitation, it seems the annoying thing is the timing when the humidity decides to play havoc on the signal. Nothing like watching overtime in a playoff game and suddenly the screen freezes. (And, yes that did happen to me. :cry:) Or when you order Blockbuster Ticket PPV and the same thing happens. But at least now you can re-start the movie on another channel if it happens to konk-out during a storm. And I did have to pull a chainsaw-massacre on the shade tree next to the house a few years ago. Seems the branches were interfereing with the signal. But, there are a LOT of channel choices on sat. you don't get w/ cable. But, you also have to pay for 'em. Unless of course you have a crafty friend who owes you favors and happens to be a distributor of descrambler cards and...um... well ya know, I don't have a friend like that, but I'm just saying and well...I better quit while I'm ahead. :wink:

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Post by K-man » Jan 15th 2003, 5:34 pm

Fnordboy, I agree that if the descrambler cards weren't free, I would never pay the $XXX to get them. Since my friend sets me up, I figure you can't beat that price. But like I said, we can't get cable anyway so it's dish for me!
Daddy sold the farm and they've killed my trees. K-man

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Post by fnordboy » Jan 15th 2003, 6:07 pm

K-man wrote: But like I said, we can't get cable anyway so it's dish for me!
I just cant even fathom that. That there is someplace in the US that doesn't offer cable. Weird :shock:

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Post by K-man » Jan 15th 2003, 6:16 pm

Well, 'The Ranch' as we call it is not in a subdivision and I guess the cable guys figure it would cost too much to run the stuff all that way for just one TV set. Our neighbors on both sides have it but when I call CABLE-ME and they ask for my address they just always said No! It all boils down to dollars and cents on their end I'm sure. So needless to say, I was very excited when the little dishes came out way back when.
Daddy sold the farm and they've killed my trees. K-man

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Post by mglenn » Jan 16th 2003, 11:41 am

fnordboy,

Sorry if I came off hard on Sat... if its working for you great! Just lettin ya know whats what on both sides of the fence.

As for Highspeed Internet, it ussually has a telephone return as Sat return is still in its infancy. As well as the fact that you are introducing a half second delay in both directions for the packet to travel 10 or 20 miles into space and back.
As far as reception. I was in others houses/apts that had similar problems, if not worse in my 'hood. So it wasn't just me.
Yup thats a plant problem. If the channels that were bad were all channels that the cable company got "off-air" (aka on an antenna) and the broadcaster was near by, say with in 20 or 40 miles, then it was mostlikely a phase cancelation problem caused by a badly leaking cable plant. But alot of issues can be caused by plant leaking, its hell on cable modems especially. Its hats refered to as "noise floor" here in the business.

As for the second tv the prices should be close to get a second tv hook up with all the digital tier stuff, should only be the cost of a second digital box. Thats going to change in the next year or so as the consumer electronice companies and CableLabs have agreed on a standard so the digital box stuff will be included in new tv's that will start coming out.

Otherwise the cable companies are going to develop a central box that will sit in the basement or some such place and will handle multiple tv's in the house, as well as High speed internet, IP telephony, PVR and VOD. It also will have a kickass touchscreen remote that will use RF instead of IR so it will work anywhere in the house.

The biggest issue Sats face in the long run is that they have to launch a bird with all the equipment that we put in the headend. If a new service comes out we just walk into the headend and install the needed equipment. Sats can't do that They have to put a new bird up. So they are always facing an uphill battle.

But like I said if it works for you stick with it. I understand better than you know that there are some REALLY BAD cable operators out there. I think that I work for one of the best. Not that they couldn't be better :oops:


Kman,

I've never heard of humidity being an issue with sats, but I'll check with one of the engineers here and see if they have ever heard of it being an issue.
"When I disagree with a rational man, I let reality be our final arbiter; if I am right, he will learn; if I am wrong, I will; one of us will win, but both will profit." - Ayn Rand

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Post by K-man » Jan 16th 2003, 12:17 pm

Mike, maybe it is the degree of humidity that matters. For instance, just b/c it may be a really humid morning/day here it won't necessarily jam the sat. it is usually the worst in hard rains or intense storms. Snow doesn't really affect it. Lightning doesn't seem to matter either. But any help you/the engineers could offer is much appreciated. Thanks.
Daddy sold the farm and they've killed my trees. K-man

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Post by fnordboy » Jan 16th 2003, 1:22 pm

mglenn wrote:fnordboy,
Sorry if I came off hard on Sat... if its working for you great! Just lettin ya know whats what on both sides of the fence.
NP man, I didnt think you came off "hard" on sat., just having a discussion. :)

I totally understand what you are saying about the ease of upgrades etc. The easiest route is not always the best :twisted: .

K-man:

Out of curiosity what is your signal strength on your satellite? I really think that has a lot to do with it.

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Post by K-man » Jan 16th 2003, 1:25 pm

Can't remember off the top of head. :? I'll get it this weekend if I remember.
Daddy sold the farm and they've killed my trees. K-man

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Post by mglenn » Jan 17th 2003, 11:10 am

OK.. all the engineers are at a conference in Florida for the week but I did ask one of the other Cable modem guys who use to install and troubleshoot Sats about the Humidity issue... He stated that its most likely a bad connector on one of your lines and when the humidity goes up water begins to condensate inside the line and that causes your issues.

As for rain and snow those will definately effect the signel from the bird as water in a solid state will absorb the signel. But when its in a gasous stated, as it is for humidity, it has no effect.

Hope this helps...
"When I disagree with a rational man, I let reality be our final arbiter; if I am right, he will learn; if I am wrong, I will; one of us will win, but both will profit." - Ayn Rand

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Post by K-man » Jan 17th 2003, 2:56 pm

Yeah, thanks Mike. I appreciate that. I'll pencil in a thorough line investigation in the To-Do book. May take a while though looks like this 3-day is all wrapped up with a pile of brush and a wood chipper. Anybody see Fargo? :twisted:
Daddy sold the farm and they've killed my trees. K-man

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